Climate Change Policy Failures:
Why Conventional Mitigation Approaches Cannot Succeed
By Howard A. Latin
“Not only presents a compelling overview of current climate change debates and the policies recommended to address the problems at hand, but it serves as a radical critique of these discussions and approaches, providing alternatives to mainstream viewpoints.”
Jean-Marc Coicaud, Former Director, United Nations University Office
at the UN Headquarters, New York City
Global climate change is already here and has caused many deaths and many billions of dollars of property destruction in the past few years. Nearly every prediction of imminent harm made by scientists a decade ago has turned out to be more severe and more rapid than expected.
Even if it had broad political support, the currently accepted approach to climate change mitigation would take too long to accomplish too little, and is bound to fail consistently.
Distinguished Professor of Law, Howard A. Latin, addresses the critical U.S. and global climate-policy errors in his new book, Climate Change Policy Failures: Why Conventional Mitigation Approaches Cannot Succeed.
“Virtually all conventional mitigation programs share the same fundamental policy mistakes,” says Latin, “and have no chance of achieving genuine climate change progress.”
Climate Change Policy Failures describes a dozen major emissions-reduction programs or proposals and their common faults, which include a graduated multi-decade, emissions-reduction strategy that would postpone substantial greenhouse gas cutbacks until 2050 or later, when they would be too late to prevent worsening climate change dangers. The book also questions the unrealistic expectations for economic incentive mechanisms and market forces to control the degradation of climate conditions; and it describes how conventional mitigation efforts have reinforced the international negotiations stalemate on climate mitigation between developed and developing nations.
Climate Change Policy Failures shows that currently accepted emissions-reduction programs, ranging from American congressional bills and cap-and-trade schemes to the Kyoto Protocol and other international treaties, would prove “too little, too late” to stem rapidly deteriorating climate conditions. Instead, Professor Latin recommends a progressive de-carbonization strategy that would replace long-term emissions-reduction programs with “clean” CO2-free alternative technologies and processes.
This “clean” technology-replacement process would eliminate large quantities of heat-trapping greenhouse gas discharges, while allowing developed and developing nations to meet their economic objectives without causing further damage to our global climate. Rather than ineffectual, multi-decade emissions-reduction programs that cannot limit the cumulative concentration of greenhouse gases in the air, Climate Change Policy Failures proposes a shift to a technology-replacement strategy that could support current lifestyles and expanding economic development without further damaging the climate.
The book addresses a number of crucial topics including:
· Challenging the mitigation consensus using a “stocks and flows” analysis
· Reducing greenhouse gas discharges while increasing climate change risks
· Economic incentive programs in contrast to direct government regulation
· The on-going stalemate in international climate negotiations
· The need for multiple institutions with overlapping mitigation responsibilities
“The only way to reduce the greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere enough to decrease climate change risks,” adds Professor Latin, “is to replace large greenhouse gas pollution sources as rapidly as feasible in as many industrial sectors and geographic regions as possible with “clean” alternative technologies, processes and methods.”
Howard A. Latin earned a B.A. from Brandeis and a J.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. In his 37 years as a law professor, he has published many highly-regarded articles on environmental law, toxic substances, torts, and products liability. He was a Fulbright Scholar in Australia during 1992 and in South Africa during 1997, and has traveled to more than 40 countries in the past three decades while conducting research on biodiversity conservation and climate change issues. In addition to the Fulbright visits, Professor Latin has been a visiting professor at the Georgetown University Law Center and the UCLA School of Law; a visiting scholar at the Rockefeller Bellagio Study Center in Lake Como, Italy, the University of California Law School at Berkeley, and the Richardson School of Law of the University of Hawaii in Honolulu; and he was the Distinguished Environmental Law Visiting Scholar at Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon. Professor Latin is an elected member of the American Law Institute, and has served as a consultant on environmental law and product safety to several government agencies and public advocacy groups.
Web site: http://www.ecovitality.org
Climate Change Policy Failures: Why Conventional Mitigation Approaches Cannot
Succeed may be purchased from the publisher’s web site, ecovitality.org,
from www.amazon.com, and through all major booksellers.